You may marvel at how beautiful a finished granite kitchen countertop or bath vanity can be. Finished and polished granite tiles and countertops are quite stunning. But have you ever wondered what granite is made of or where it comes from? Do you know how it gets from being a slab of rock to a shiny countertop? Here are a few facts about granite that may surprise you and add to your appreciation for this beautiful stone.
Fact #1: The minerals present in the granite dictate the color. Granite is made of crystallized minerals. There are several minerals usually present in granite, but quartz and feldspar make up the primary part of the stone. So depending on the amount of these various minerals, the color will differ. For example, the amount of feldspar in a slab of granite may cause it to be a light or dark gray or even pink.
Fact #2: Granite was formed deep underground, near the earth's core, and over time was pushed to the surface. There are a couple of theories as to what actually happened to cause its existence. Some think granite was made when magma hardened under pressure. Others believe in the metamorphic theory, thinking that it was deeply buried rock that essentially changed over time. Whichever theory is correct, some granite found today is the oldest rock on the planet, and has been a popular building material since ancient times.
Fact #3: Granite is found in mountains. Slabs are quarried from mountain ranges in places like Brazil and India and parts of Africa. It's quite a process to remove the granite from the mountain and eventually install it in your kitchen or bath. The slabs are cut and re-cut, treated to create a smooth surface, and polished to enhance the natural beauty of the stone. Eventually they wind up in the shop of a granite professional to be custom-fitted for your home.
Fact #4: Just because it's called granite doesn't mean it is. Not everything termed "granite" is true granite from a geological perspective. Sometimes stones are grouped into the category "granite" for commercial reasons.
Fact #5: The word granite derives from the Latin granum, meaning grain. It's an appropriate use of the word considering the coarse graining visible in granite.
Fact #6: Granite is one tough building material. You may hear a lot of talk about granite's scratch and stain resistance, but granite is also very crush-resistant and can endure heavy loads. You may not put a lot of physical pressure onto your countertops, but you may still find this fact reassuring. If granite can hold up a mountain it can certainly hold up under the pressures of everyday use.
These six interesting facts about granite no doubt make you appreciate even more this beautiful rock that serves as your kitchen countertop or bathroom vanity. It made a long journey - from earth's core to mountain side to granite manufacturer to your home. That in and of itself attests to granite's staying power!
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